2004

U.S. Nationals

Senior Pairs

by Alexandra Stevenson

 
Standings
Place Team SP FS
1 Rena Inoue & John Baldwin Jr. 2 1
2 Kathryn Orscher & Garrett Lucash 3 2
3 Tiffany Scott & Philip Dulebohn 1 3
4 Jennifer Don & Jonathon Hunt 4 4
5 Laura Handy & Jeremy Allen 5 5
6 Larisa Spielberg & Craig Joeright 9 6
7 Marcy Hinzmann & Aaron Parcham 7 7
8 Brittany Vise & Nicholas Kole 6 8
9 Tiffany Stiegler & Burt Cording 8 9
10 Amanda Evors & Mark Ladwig 10 10
11 Emma Phibbs & Michael McPherson 11 11
12 Kristen Roth & Steve Hartsell 12 12
13 Tiffany Vise & Derek Trent 13 13
14 Tiffany Sfikas & Jeffrey Weiss 16 14
15 Colette Appel & Lee Harris 14 15
16 Brandi Sandoval & Laureano Ibarra 17 16
17 Amy Howerton & Steven Pottenger 15 17
18 Janice Mayne & Michael Modro 18 18
19 Jacqueline Mattson & Jason Heffron 19 19
20 Lindsay Rogeness & Brian Rogeness 20 20

 

Short Program

 
Starting Order - Short Program
  1. Tiffany Vise & Derek Trent
  2. Tiffany Sfikas & Jeffrey Weiss
  3. Larisa Spielberg & Craig Joeright
  4. Lindsay Rogeness & Brian Rogeness
  5. Amanda Evors & Mark Ladwig
  6. Tiffany Stiegler & Burt Cording
  7. Janice Mayne & Michael Modro
  8. Jennifer Don & Jonathon Hunt
  9. Jacqueline Mattson & Jason Heffron
  10. Laura Handy & Jeremy Allen
  11. Marcy Hinzmann & Aaron Parcham
  12. Amy Howerton & Steven Pottenger
  13. Colette Appel & Lee Harris
  14. Brandi Sandoval & Laureano Ibarra
  15. Emma Phibbs & Michael McPherson
  16. Kristen Roth & Steve Hartsell
  17. Tiffany Scott & Philip Dulebohn
  18. Kathryn Orscher & Garrett Lucash
  19. Brittany Vise & Nicholas Kole
  20. Rena Inoue & John Baldwin Jr.

 

Short Program Placements

Place

Team
1 Tiffany Scott & Philip Dulebohn
2 Rena Inoue & John Baldwin Jr.
3 Kathryn Orscher & Garrett Lucash
4 Jennifer Don & Jonathon Hunt
5 Laura Handy & Jeremy Allen
6 Brittany Vise & Nicholas Kole
7 Marcy Hinzmann & Aaron Parcham
8 Tiffany Stiegler & Burt Cording
9 Larisa Spielberg & Craig Joeright
10 Amanda Evors & Mark Ladwig
11 Emma Phibbs & Michael McPherson
12 Kristen Roth & Steve Hartsell
13 Tiffany Vise & Derek Trent
14 Colette Appel & Lee Harris
15 Amy Howerton & Steven Pottenger
16 Tiffany Sfikas & Jeffrey Weiss
17 Brandi Sandoval & Laureano Ibarra
18 Janice Mayne & Michael Modro
19 Jacqueline Mattson & Jason Heffron
20 Lindsay Rogeness & Brian Rogeness


Twenty pairs! What a marathon Ė 8:23 till 11:20 pm. The event served as the main course after the appetizer of the junior pairs final which finished a couple of hours earlier. But sometimes even a feast can be just too much of a good thing for even the most devoted fan.

By the luck of the draw, the top three pairs from last year drew to skate in the last group of four. Despite the fact that all three made significant errors, they ended up in the lead, although second and third were a reversal of the 2003 standings.

FIRST Skating first of that group and using the Farandole from Bizetís Carmen, Tiffany Scott & Philip Dulebohn, who were defending the title for the first time, showed polish and style in their lift but on their second move she fell on her triple toe loop which appeared to unsteady him and he messed up his landing.

They pulled themselves together to complete the remaining elements but their first set of marks consisted of only three 5.1s and six 5.2s. Their presentation marks were three 5.5s, three 5.6s and three 5.7s.

"Nationals is always a lot of pressure," said Dulebohn. "I felt more tight tonight than usual. Thereís the expectation. Nothing will be acceptable other than first place. We do a lot of run throughs. Weíve been very consistent in practice. We are a little disappointed. We let ourselves down. We can do a lot better. Maybe we got a little too loose out there. We need to get more experience."

They received seven votes of first place, plus a second and a third.

SECOND The two dissenting judges preferred Rena Inoue & John Baldwin, who were third last year and tenth in the world championships. Skating last, Inoue came down from her the throw triple loop and splattered flat on the ice.

They did put a lot of choreography into their routine which was to the music, "Murder at the Cotton Club" and gained second place ahead of last yearís runners-up, who were 16th in the world championships, Katie Orscher & Garrett Lucash.

THIRD Skating to "Still Got the Blues" by Gary Moore, Orscher&Lucash presented a very high throw triple Salchow that drew great applause but he could not hold the landing of his triple toe loop. "We felt we did present ourselves well," said Orscher while Lucash added, "Thereís a lot more than just the technical mark and we learn from the small mistakes we make."

FOURTH Jennifer Don & Jonathon Hunt, who made a promising debut finishing sixth last year, performed to Rachmaninoffís Piano Concerto No.2 though the showing was marred when she fell on the throw triple flip.

FIFTH Skating tenth and interpreting the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto in E Minor, Laura Handy & Jeremy Allen, gave a first rate performance which started with secure triple toe loops and a solid double twist.

Their throw triple toe loop was very high and the other elements were clean so it was a surprise that their marks did not rise above one 5.2 for the first set and one 5.3 for the second set and dropped to one 4.7 for each division.

SIXTH Brittany Vise & Nicholas Kole, who were 10th in the last World Junior Championships, were competing for the first time at senior level. They gave a solid showing to music from the movie, "Six Days and Seven Nights". Brittanyís older sister, Tiffany, who teamed up in July with Derek Trent finished seven places below her. (THIRTEENTH)

SEVENTH For some it has been a case of musical partners. Aaron Parchem, who with Stephanie Kalesavich, won the bronze medal in this event in 2002, is now skating with Marcy Hinzmann, who skated the 2002-3 season with Steve Hartsell. Harsell is now skating with Kristen Roth and they lie TWELFTH.

There were so many new teams promising great things in the future but going through the teething stage now.

EIGHTH Tiffany Stiegler, 19, who won the Novice title with her brother, Johnny, nine years ago, and competed with him until he gave up the sport to go to school in 2003, has a new, very experienced partner in Bert Cording, a 27 year old black belt who has had three previous partners at senior level.

Stiegler revealed, "It was traumatic. I thought I would never skate with anyone except my brother. I didnít think Iíd be happy with anyone else but Bert is so supportive. Heís from Nashville but he now stays with my family (in Los Angeles) and has Johnnyís old room. When Johnny comes home on vacation he has to sleep on a mattress on the floor. Fortunately, they get on really well. Johnnyís on the phone with me all the time making sure Iím okay."

Stiegler survived a bad crash in the warm-up when Janice Mayne ploughed into her. "I felt it in my collarbone," she said, pointing to a nasty quarter sized bloody spot. "You only have six minutes to warm-up and everyone scrambles. This (Mayne) is a new team and collisions happen. Thatís okay. Iím okay."

Stiegler & Cording presented a lovely throw triple loop to Straussís "Blue Danube". Their only flaw was her double instead of triple toe loop. (Mayne and her partner, Michael Modro, lie EIGHTEENTH.)

NINTH Third to skate were Larisa Spieberg & Craig Joeright, who were taking part in their fifth U.S. championships. Their best finish was their first, third in 2000. And it looks like that will remain their best. Last year they were third in the short program but dropped to fourth overall.

This year they had two falls. Spielberg seemed a little stunned. "We havenít missed the throw triple loop for some time. I landed and then went down." She also fell on the triple toe loop while Joeright did a double.

FIFTEENTH Last yearís junior champions, Amy Howerton and Steven Pottenger, lost their hopes of creating a stir when she fell on the throw triple salchow.

SIXTEENTH Former two time British champion, Tiffany Sfikas and Jeffrey Weiss, competing only a short time after Sfikasís recovery from long lasting injuries after being thrown across a room by one of her former partners, gave a small taste of what could be, by entertainingly using the music, "Little Wing" by Jimi Hendrix performed by Stevie Ray Vaughan.

"The music has power behind it but itís still sultry," said Sfikas. "It suites our personality."

 

Free Skate

 
Starting Order - Free Skating
  1. Brandi Sandoval & Laureano Ibarra
  2. Lindsay Rogeness & Brian Rogeness
  3. Jacqueline Mattson & Jason Heffron
  4. Janice Mayne & Michael Modro
  5. Colette Appel & Lee Harris
  6. Amy Howerton & Steven Pottenger
  7. Tiffany Sfikas & Jeffrey Weiss
  8. Tiffany Vise & Derek Trent
  9. Emma Phibbs & Michael McPherson
  10. Amanda Evors & Mark Ladwig
  11. Larisa Spielberg & Craig Joeright
  12. Kristen Roth & Steve Hartsell
  13. Tiffany Stiegler & Burt Cording
  14. Marcy Hinzmann & Aaron Parcham
  15. Laura Handy & Jeremy Allen
  16. Brittany Vise & Nicholas Kole
  17. Kathryn Orscher & Garrett Lucash
  18. Rena Inoue & John Baldwin Jr.
  19. Jennifer Don & Jonathon Hunt
  20. Tiffany Scott & Philip Dulebohn

 

Free Skating Placements
Place Team
1 Rena Inoue & John Baldwin Jr.
2 Kathryn Orscher & Garrett Lucash
3 Tiffany Scott & Philip Dulebohn
4 Jennifer Don & Jonathon Hunt
5 Laura Handy & Jeremy Allen
6 Larisa Spielberg & Craig Joeright
7 Marcy Hinzmann & Aaron Parcham
8 Brittany Vise & Nicholas Kole
9 Tiffany Stiegler & Burt Cording
10 Amanda Evors & Mark Ladwig
11 Emma Phibbs & Michael McPherson
12 Kristen Roth & Steve Hartsell
13 Tiffany Vise & Derek Trent
14 Tiffany Sfikas & Jeffrey Weiss
15 Colette Appel & Lee Harris
16 Brandi Sandoval & Laureano Ibarra
17 Amy Howerton & Steven Pottenger
18 Janice Mayne & Michael Modro
19 Jacqueline Mattson & Jason Heffron
20 Lindsay Rogeness & Brian Rogeness

 


John Baldwin, who is 30, has dreamed of the moment on Friday night when he accepted the gold medal and was acknowledged as the best in the United States ever since he made his first nationals at novice level way back in 1986. He has skated in all but one nationals since then.

You might even say he was born to skate. His dad competed in his first nationals in 1973. But when he came off the ice at 8:06 he said, "I felt like quitting. It was bittersweet. We won but I messed up. But that was totally the wrong attitude. Rena (his partner) skated fantastic."

He knew he was in trouble right away. Only seconds into their "Pearl Harbor" routine, after their walleys, he doubled their side by side triple toe loops. The split triple twist was accomplished although she crashed into him on the landing. On their side by side double Axel sequence to triple toes, he fell.

Then he threw her badly into the triple Salchow. She flew through the air at an incredible angle and though she completed the revolutions, a nasty sprawl on the ice was inevitable.

Things went better for a while with a couple of solid, interesting lifts but the final one went wrong. She went up but their arms didnít lock and she collapsed on him.

If this were a marriage, the bedroom door would be locked fast and sheíd be on the phone seeking a good divorce lawyer. As itís skating, she smiled sweetly and said nothing. She has a lot invested and at least they are now champions.

Inoue, who is 27, was a two time Olympian in singles and pairs for Japan. She left her native country and teamed with Baldwin four seasons ago. Last year they finished third in nationals and competed at Worlds where they finished tenth.

Five judges thought Inoue & Baldwin should win and so they did since they were already in second place going into the free. Maybe some karma came his way just for sticking around so long or maybe the judges felt Inoue deserved some sympathy.

Some, including this reporter, felt Orscher & Lucash were more deserving. However, they received one first, four second, two third and two fourth place votes which gave them a majority for second place.

They chose to interpete Khachaturianís Spartacus and although the design of their costumes was vaguely Grecian, they were mismatched with her in tones of blues and he in intense black and gold.

They began with a good, high triple twist followed by side by side triple toes sequenced into double flips which really got the crowd going. Although she stepped out of her throw triple flip and he singled his Axel, they got back in the grove executing a whole array of tricks.

This is just their third season together. She is 19, he 25 and last year they were second in the U.S. and 16th in the world. So they did not appear too disappointed that they climbed from third after the short to take the runners-up spot once again.

The deposed Scott & Dulebohn can hardly be pleased. They won this title last year at their fifth attempt. They were runners-up twice, and prior to that fifth and eighth. To finish third after winning the short program must have been bitter but they, too, smiled. Not only did they lose their title, they will not go to the world championships since the U.S. can send only two pairs and the selection committee confirmed that the team would be decided on order of the eventís finish. They will, however, represent the U.S. at the Four Continents Championships.

"Everyone makes mistakes," said Dulebohn, "At Lalique we beat the current world silver medalists because they had a bad performance. Iím disappointed but itís just one performance."

They drew to skate last and performed their Les Miserables routine from last year, Scott explained, "change one program one year and the other the following year. Putting together a good routine is very hard. It takes time to get it to work and if you keep it for a second year you can work on the polish and make it so it seems like second nature."

However, that didnít happen. He fell on their first move, the side by side triple toes and couldnít continue to the double toe. She did both jumps. The triple twist, lasso lift and throw triple Salchow went well. But they collapsed on their star lift and the throw triple loop became a single loop.

They did receive two votes of first, two of second, two of third and three of fourth.

Don & Hunt also received one vote of first, along with two seconds, three thirds and three fourths which meant it was quite close for third place with both Scott & Dulebohn and Don & Hunt gaining a majority of six votes of third or better. Scott & Dulebohn gained the bronze because the sum of the majority places was only 12 for them but 14 for Don & Hunt. In other words Scott & Dulebohn had two less places, so Don & Hunt remained fourth.

Don & Hunt skated to "Freedom" by Michael W. Smith in black and silver outfits. They started with a triple twist but in their sequence of triple toe and double toe, she doubled the first jump.

Their throw triple Salchow was good and they had some extremely novel and intriguing variations of positions on their lifts and entrance to the death spiral. However, on their second side by side triple toes, she also doubled. Then they struggled on their last lift. At one point it looked as if he would drop her.

Handy & Allen remained fifth. Interpreting Rachmaninoffís Piano Concerto No. 2 in D Minor, she in red and he in red and black, they began with a double twist into side by side triple toe sequence into double toe and a throw triple Salchow followed by a back press lift in which she finished up upside down. In fact she finished up upside down in two other interesting variations of standard lifts. Although she only did a double toe on their side by side triple toe loops, she subsequently landed a throw triple toe.

Spielberg & Joeright advanced from ninth to sixth. They used rather somber music from the movies "Plunkett & MacLeane" and "Romeo & Juliet", and wore pleasant on the eye blue-grey outfits. She had trouble with her single jumps but held the landings of the throw triple loop and throw triple Salchow. Their marks comprised two 4.8s, a 4.9, four 5.0s and two 5.1s for the first set and a 4.8, a 4.9, a 5.0, a 5.1, four 5.2s and a 5.3 for the second set.

Hinzmann & Parchem remained seventh. They interpreted "Brave Heart" by Maxime Rodriquez, in beautiful turquoise and grey outfits. They began to the sound of church bells and soared into a great triple twist but then she fell on the side by side triple toe loop. They had a unique move with her in a spiral and him in a spread-eagle which transitioned into a throw triple loop. Unfortunately she could not hold the landing. However, she was successful with their throw triple Salchow.

Vise & Kole dropped from sixth to eighth. They used exciting music from "Pirates of the Caribbean", and began with excellent triple toes to a throw triple loop and a split triple twist. A pair flying camel to sit spin followed with a good overhead lift with one hand descent. She struggled to hold the landing of their side by side double Axel but recovered in time for the other jump in that sequence, double toe. An inverted star lift transitioned to a one hand hold and twist descent. She fell on their throw triple Salchow and things slowed down somewhat from then on. Their back inside death spiral had a reverse hand hold. Their final lift, a carry, never got airborne. She had an interesting entry into their back outside death spiral in which she holds her foot in a high kick. Unfortunately, they ran out of steam and they werenít able to exit the move successfully.

Stiegler & Cording dropped a place to ninth. Skating to "Zorro", she dressed in white lace and he in Spanish attire, they opened with a split double twist into a throw triple loop but she fell which threw them off as they attempted to follow with side by side triple toes into double flips They did a lovely carry lift with three positions. They finished with an excellent star lift and back outside death spiral.

Evora & Ladwig stayed tenth. Skating to Rimsky Korsakovís Scheherazade and competing in their first nationals, they began with a solid triple twist followed by a solid one hand lasso with twist descent. She fell on their throw triple loop and they substituted their planned side by side triple toes with double flips. Their traveling entrance to the forward inside death spiral was interesting and their lifts difficult. They had errors but gave a very promising showing.

The other pairs all made significant errors.

Judges

     J1:   Marilyn Whelan
     J2:
  Richard Perez
     J3:
  Roger Glenn
     J4:
  Lori Dunn
     J5:
   Kathleen Harmon
     J6:   Lorrie Parker
     J7:
  Lucy Brennan
     J8:
  Sharon Wiggins
     J9:
  Glennace Cohen

 

Ordinals

Short Program
Place Skater J1 J2 J3 J4 J5 J6 J7 J8 J9 Maj. TOM
1 Tiffany Scott & Philip Dulebohn 1 1 1 1 1 3 1 1 2 7/1  
2 Rena Inoue & John Baldwin Jr. 2 3 3 2 2 1 4 2 1 6/2  
3 Kathryn Orscher & Garrett Lucash 3 2 2 4 3 2 3 4 4 6/3  
4 Jennifer Don & Jonathon Hunt 4 4 5 3 4 4 2 3 3 8/4  
5 Laura Handy & Jeremy Allen 5 4 4 5 6 5 5 5 5 8/5  
6 Brittany Vise & Nicholas Kole 6 6 9 9 9 8 6 6 7 5/7  
7 Marcy Hinzmann & Aaron Parcham 8 10 6 8 7 6 9 9 6 6/8 69
8 Tiffany Stiegler & Burt Cording 10 7 8 6 5 7 10 8 10 6/8 71
9 Larisa Spielberg & Craig Joeright 14 9 10 7 8 12 7 7 9 6/9  
10 Amanda Evors & Mark Ladwig 7 8 11 11 11 11 8 10 8 5/10  
11 Emma Phibbs & Michael McPherson 11 11 7 11 10 9 11 11 14 8/11  
12 Kristen Roth & Steve Hartsell 15 12 13 10 13 14 13 12 11 7/13  
13 Tiffany Vise & Derek Trent 13 13 12 14 15 10 14 13 13 6/13  
14 Colette Appel & Lee Harris 12 16 15 13 12 15 12 14 17 5/14 63
15 Amy Howerton & Steven Pottenger 9 14 14 15 14 13 17 15 16 5/14 64
16 Tiffany Sfikas & Jeffrey Weiss 16 15 16 16 16 16 16 16 12 9/16  
17 Brandi Sandoval & Laureano Ibarra 18 17 17 17 17 17 15 18 15 7/17  
18 Janice Mayne & Michael Modro 20 18 19 18 19 18 19 17 18 5/18  
19 Jacqueline Mattson & Jason Heffron 17 20 18 19 20 19 18 19 19 7/19  
20 Lindsay Rogeness & Brian Rogeness 19 19 20 20 18 20 20 20 20 9/20  

 

Free Skate
Place Skater J1 J2 J3 J4 J5 J6 J7 J8 J9 Maj. TOM
1 Rena Inoue & John Baldwin Jr. 3 3 1 1 1 1 1 2 4 5/1  
2 Kathryn Orscher & Garrett Lucash 2 2 3 4 4 2 2 1 3 5/2  
3 Tiffany Scott & Philip Dulebohn 4 1 4 2 2 3 3 4 1 6/3 12
4 Jennifer Don & Jonathon Hunt 1 4 2 3 3 4 4 3 2 6/3 14
5 Laura Handy & Jeremy Allen 6 5 5 5 6 6 6 5 7 8/6  
6 Larisa Spielberg & Craig Joeright 5 6 6 6 7 5 5 7 6 7/6  
7 Marcy Hinzmann & Aaron Parcham 8 7 7 8 8 7 8 6 8 9/8  
8 Brittany Vise & Nicholas Kole 7 8 9 7 5 8 9 8 5 7/8  
9 Tiffany Stiegler & Burt Cording 10 9 8 10 10 9 7 9 11 5/9  
10 Amanda Evors & Mark Ladwig 9 10 11 9 9 10 10 10 9 8/10  
11 Emma Phibbs & Michael McPherson 11 11 10 11 14 12 11 11 10 7/11  
12 Kristen Roth & Steve Hartsell 12 12 12 12 11 11 12 13 12 8/12  
13 Tiffany Vise & Derek Trent 13 13 14 16 12 13 18 12 13 6/13  
14 Tiffany Sfikas & Jeffrey Weiss 14 13 13 14 15 15 14 14 14 7/14  
15 Colette Appel & Lee Harris 15 15 15 13 13 14 13 15 15 9/15  
16 Brandi Sandoval & Laureano Ibarra 16 16 16 15 17 17 17 16 16 6/16  
17 Amy Howerton & Steven Pottenger 17 17 18 18 16 16 15 17 19 6/17  
18 Janice Mayne & Michael Modro 18 18 17 17 19 18 16 19 18 7/18  
19 Jacqueline Mattson & Jason Heffron 20 19 19 19 18 19 19 18 17 8/19  
20 Lindsay Rogeness & Brian Rogeness 19 20 20 20 20 20 20 20 20 9/20  

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